Buying your first or next home should be an exciting moment. But, keeping track of all legal proceedings surrounding your purchase can often detract from the excitement and leave you with a few headaches.

Stamp duty is just one of those legal processes and one that is often shrouded in mystery for many. With the right legal support, understanding and paying your stamp duty can be made simple.

Here is a simple explainer from our expert solicitors in Portsmouth.

Stamp duty explained

Stamp duty is a fee or a tax that you pay to HMRC when you purchase a property that is worth over a certain price.

Especially for first-time buyers, this can throw an unexpected spanner in the works when saving for your new home. The rates and cost to you can sometimes be hard to estimate as each property is different.

While it can seem like a straightforward process, our conveyancing solicitors in Portsmouth can help you should you ever become stuck with the rates or other intricacies that surround this tax.

Who needs to pay stamp duty?

If you are buying a home, you can expect to pay stamp duty. Usually, a solicitor will pay it on your behalf during the purchase process.

In England and Northern Ireland, stamp duty will not be collected on the first £250,000 of the property’s worth. For the first £425,000 of the property’s worth, first-time buyers are exempt from stamp duty. 

If you are purchasing a second home, you will pay 3% at the lowest band (and increasing rates above this figure). In addition to the standard charges, you will be charged an additional 2% if you do not reside in the UK.

The government plans to reassess stamp duty in April 2025, and rates could change.

Can I add the stamp duty to my mortgage?

You may be able to, depending on the lender who is offering you the mortgage, but it is often best if you avoid this.

Doing so can result in a higher interest rate and a higher price in the long term when you are paying the mortgage back. It can also affect the offers open to you in the future if you want to borrow against your home.

If you need any help with clarification around stamp duty and mortgages, contact our team.

“I do not understand stamp duty, can you help?”

Whilst it may seem complicated, it is our job to take care of stamp duty and leave you free to plan for your future home.

We have helped first-time buyers and multiple homeowners across the South understand and pay their stamp duty with ease.

The support from an experienced team of conveyancing solicitors makes the process of buying or selling your home simple.

Get support from your local solicitor in Portsmouth

Andrew & Andrew provide timely, resourceful and cost-effective legal solutions for all your conveyancing needs and take care of all legal processes involved with property transfer.

We are here to help whenever you are ready. To get started, please talk to our team.